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Questions tagged [optics]

Optics is the study of light, and its interaction with matter. It includes topics such as imaging systems, fiber optics, lasers, quantum optics, and more.

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Stellar aberration: distal or local? Experimental proof?

Stokes put forward the theory (I am simplifying here.) that stellar aberration takes place out in space and that light from stars is already fixed in direction with respect to the Earth's surface by ...
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Could a material be created to effectively negate directed energy weapons?

You always see lasers and plasma guns being used in SF space battles, but couldn't a sufficiently reflective or absorbent material be utilized to essentially make these sorts of weapons useless? On ...
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32 views

What can be done to find the angle $\theta$ of the prism?

Below there's an illustrated diagram Consider that a parallel beam of light is incident from air at an angle $\alpha$ on the side PQ of a right angled triangular prism of refractive index $n$. Light ...
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0answers
25 views

Optical path of light [on hold]

What is optical path of light and what is it's mathematical formula? Is this the correct equation of optical path: optical path length = (number of waves of light in any medium) x (wavelength of ...
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0answers
14 views

What kind of lens would eliminate distortion through a cylinder wall?

Suppose you are trying to look at an object inside of an acrylic cylinder. What kind of lens could you use on the outside to eliminate the distortion caused by the wall? The image can be inverted.
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25 views

Behavior of wave fronts as it crosses a convex lens [on hold]

There is a explanation given in my book regarding behavior of wave fronts as it crosses a convex lens( i.e refraction of plane wave by a convex lens). Here is the thing that's written :- "When a ...
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2answers
38 views

How can I focus an optical device at infinity, inside a room with limited space?

I have a custom coupled camera/spectrograph imaging system that I need to focus at infinity for a microscope setup. I can't move the device outside, where I would be able to use some distant object to ...
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0answers
9 views

Seeing image in plane mirror

I recently came across this problem in which we are asked to tell if an eye (of negligible aperture) will be able to see the image of a point object in plane mirror. [Also the question (because of pt ...
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0answers
13 views

The diffraction angle of toroidal grating

I have a 300 g/mm toroidal grating (r=100 mm, R=920 mm, h=19 nm, c/d=0.51). I want to know the diffraction angle of 800 nm and 80 nm light when the AOE (angle of incidence) of them is 85 degrees, i.e. ...
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2answers
20 views

Light hitting a GRIN (Gradient-index) lens at the optical angle

In the image below, rays of light are hitting the GRIN (Gradient-index) lens at the optical angle and then converge towards the optical axis. Why do they do this? The refractive index is only a ...
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0answers
11 views

Can the four-f correlator be solved geometrically?

For an optics lab my class created a four-f correlator and saw how a lens can create a Fourier transform of an image, and we can filter out spatial frequencies of an image by blocking parts of the ...
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16 views

Properties of transition metal dichalcogenides [on hold]

Which properties of these materials can be studied (the fundamental physics of these materials) which is relevant to their application in the optoelectronics industry?
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22 views

How could i do FEM simulation for a water lens? [on hold]

please, I need to know how I could make a simulation FEM for the aspherical lens (water lens).
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1answer
16 views

How to find out the temperature of phonons using the Raman anti-Stokes and Stoke intensities ratio?

Basically the title, the concept is simple, but I`m having a hard time trying to9 find an explicit solution.
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1answer
21 views

Rayleigh Scattering, Atmosphere-Dependant

I've come across the Wikipedia article on Rayleigh Scattering and it quotes that In detail, the intensity $I$ of light scattered by any one of the small spheres of diameter $d$ and refractive ...
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1answer
28 views

Why doesn't optical path difference occur when light from two coherent sources pass through a lens?

I guess, for a convex lens I might say that the marginal rays travel a longer path but spend a shorter time inside the lens, while the opposite of that happens in case of paraxial rays. That can be an ...
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1answer
31 views

Sign convention in optic problems

Note: The convention used in our physics textbook and the mentioned question is Cartesion Convention Today in our physics test, we were given the following question:- A mirror has focal length 20 cm ...
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1answer
47 views

Intensity of fringes in a Double Slit experiment

I have learnt that the intensity of fringes in a double slit experiment depends on the following formula: $$I = 4i\cos^2(\delta/2)$$ But it turn out that the intensity of th consecutive fringe ...
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2answers
38 views

Relation Between Speed of Light & Reflected Angle (Fizeau–Foucault)

I have a bachelor's in physics & its recently struck me that I do not understand, semantically, what phenomenon allows us to measure the speed of light through air in a small room with a laser and ...
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1answer
46 views

Relationship between aperture function and Fraunhofer diffraction patern

I have read that the Fraunhofer diffraction pattern of a source is the Fourier transform of the aperture, however I have not been able to follow the proofs. All of them seem to demonstrate that the ...
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3answers
30 views

Is it possible to design a 2D periodic structure so that it reflects a specific wavelength?

Is it possible to design a 2D periodic structure so that it reflects a single and specific wavelength at normal incidence? Is it possible to do such with dielectric structures so that the overall ...
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2answers
31 views

Magnifying power of a microscope for a farsighted person

I was doing some problems on optical instruments and in one of the questions it was asked that if a simple microscope(magnifying glass) has a magnifying power 5X for a normal relaxed eye.. what will ...
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0answers
16 views

Under what topic in optics are things like coherent imaging, incoherent imaging, point spread functions,etc covered? [on hold]

What book can I read to introduce myself to these topics? I am doing a project that involves computational 3d imaging and haven't taken any advanced course in optics.
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1answer
16 views

How far can we track ionic based spaceships if antenna fails

Suppose we send an ionic based spaceship and all the antennas are broken on launch, suppose the spaceship destination is another solar system. Obviously we can track it with optical telescopes, but i ...
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1answer
25 views

Which transparent material alters light the least?

I am making a spectrometer as my school project. It's main application will be analyzing the light emitted by various light sources. It measures visible, near IR and UVA/UVB radiation. I need it to be ...
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1answer
46 views

How does a dielectric interact with a laser beam? [on hold]

A nano-ball made of latex, which is insulating, has no net electrical charge, and is much smaller than the wavelength of the light. The ball is compact, homogeneous with spherical shape. It has ...
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1answer
42 views

Why is the thin prism always in the position of minimum deviation? [on hold]

Our textbook says that a thin prism (a prism of angle less than 10°) is always in the position of minimum deviation, but doesn't provide any explanation as to why that it is. What would happen if I ...
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0answers
23 views

Measuring the velocity of moving surface with a diffraction grating

I was reading a paper on vehicle speed sensing and ran across the following quote: The light reflected from the surface travels through an optical grating, and is focused on a pair of photo-...
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2answers
7k views

Why are green screens green? [closed]

How/why do green screens work? What's so special about the color green that lets us seamlessly replace the background with another image and keep the human intact? Are there other colors that work ...
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0answers
17 views

Does diffraction change longitudinal component of k?

Say a monochromatic wave in 2D travelling in the $x$ direction passes an aperture of width $a$ at $x=0$. The amplitude distribution in $k_y$ afterwards will follow the Fourier transform of the shape ...
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2answers
74 views
+50

Higher-order dispersion in non-linear optics

In many cases, dispersion of an optical medium is presented by saying that the dependence of the wavenumber $k$ on the (angular) frequency $\omega$ can be expanded in Taylor series as: $$ k(\omega) = ...
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2answers
31 views

Shot noise and single photon detection

I am looking into the noise considerations of a single photon detector, specifically an avalanche detector. I am wondering if it makes sense to think about shot noise when considering a single photon. ...
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1answer
80 views

Single Photon though prism

What will happen to a single photon when it goes through a prism? Will it just be deflected in the direction related to its frequency? I made this drawing for better understanding, here if I place a ...
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0answers
16 views

Normal incidence at a plane dielectric boundary [closed]

How to prove that for glass air interface ($n_2=1.5$ ,$n_1=1.0$) for normal incidence of EM wave reflection and transmission coefficients are $0.04$ and $0.96$?
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2answers
34 views

Explanation of formation of Newton's rings

I was asked to do a lab report in my University about Newton's rings experiment that we made in lab. I understand that the aim of the experiment is to measure the wavelength of a light after the ...
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1answer
43 views

Why can't ultraviolet light pass through glass?

What factor determine whether a body behaves like a transparent object for EM waves of a particular frequency?
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3answers
77 views

Why do we see virtually inverted image on concave side of spoon?

As we know that a virtual image is always erect then why do we see a virtual inverted image in the concave side of a spoon.
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1answer
62 views

Why don't we see inverted image while wearing spectacles? [closed]

We know that the lens in our eyes forms an inverted image on retina and brain reverses it to give the correct image. But when one wears specs the image would get reversed twice so we should see things ...
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0answers
30 views

Optics reference request [duplicate]

I am taking a optics course next semester, and it will be with theoretical optics course with lots electromagnetic waves, not the classical kind. I searched a lot for books and couldn’t find a proper ...
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35 views

working to understand virtual images

I'm starting to understand how to use lenses a bit more, but I'm still pretty lost. I'm building a project that's extremely similar to this one with the implementation. I think my biggest challenge ...
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1answer
26 views

Influence of monochromator entrance slit width on spectral bandwidth

I am working with a Czerny–Turner monchromator (a Bentham TMc300, to be precise), with adjustable entrance and exit slits. I started by acquiring the signal with the slits completely opened, and I got ...
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3answers
714 views

In Young's double slit experiment, can there be an even number of maxima in the central envelope maximum?

In Young's double slit experiment, can we get an even number of maxima in the central envelope maximum? If so how and why the regular modelling of the double split interfaces is with an odd number ...
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3answers
115 views

Frequency Chirp, Instantaneous Frequency and Photons

I understand ideas coming from Optics, such as the concept of frequency chirp and instantaneous frequency, and their use in nonlinear optics. However, I am struggling in giving them an intuitive ...
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0answers
22 views

How to check whether the telescope is properly collimated?

I have made a refractive type telescope. I have roughly checked that whether it is properly collimated, which is nothing but the conventional method. I looked through the telescope at a distant object ...
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1answer
20 views

Material for lid of a solar cooker

Normal glass allows visible light to pass through, but it blocks ultraviolet rays. If I use a glass which allows both the kinds of rays to pass through it as the lid of my solar cooker as lid, will ...
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0answers
20 views

Gaussian beam propagation in a medium

Suppose we have a gaussian beam in a medium with $n>1$ with a waist $w_0$ centered at $z = 0$. After a distance of $d_{med}$ the beam leaves the medium and travels through air. To compute the ...
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9answers
12k views

Why can't we see images reflected on a piece of paper?

Why can't you see a reflected image on a piece of paper? Say you put a pen in front of the paper, even when light rays are coming from other sources, hitting the pen, reflecting back, and hitting the ...
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3answers
136 views

What is the speed of a photon in water?

What is the speed of light in water? The speed of light in vacuum, divided by the index of refraction for water. And what is the speed of a photon in water?
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1answer
27 views

Optics of an all-sky camera

I'm curious about the optics of an all sky camera like this one or this one. My suspicion is that the sensor has an inherently wide field of view - the former has a lens that's 1.55, which doesn't ...
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21 views

Lens derivation [on hold]

Is there a relation between angular magnification and linear magnification? I did search it and it seems there is a non-trignometri relationship which I don't understand.